The Film Feature: Part 1

Rafaella Ambrosio, Sophmore Writer

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The question itself is simple; “Why do we watch films?”. Unfortunately, the answer isn’t so simple. I think we can all agree that all different kinds of film can be used as a form of escapism. In fact, I even have historical evidence to back that up. During the 1930s, movies could be used to distract audiences from the Great Depression. In the 1940s, movies were used to distract people, or sometimes promote propaganda about what was going on in World War II. But enough of that, there are more reasons as to why we watch films.

Education. One reason we might create, use, or watch films is to educate. Just look at the millions of documentaries you can find online or in stores. There’s even an abundance of film essays on YouTube on anything and everything, from the Renaissance, to why mukbangs (food eating shows) even exist. We can learn just about anything from films, from facts, to philosophies.

We can relate. Another reason why we might like films so much is the fact that sometimes, let’s be real here, we can totally and indefinitely relate with that one character who always unintentionally forgets to bring things to class. Or maybe we were once that two year old in a comedy film who accidentally ran into a glass screen door, thinking the door just happened to be wide open for no apparent reason at all. Escapism or Change of Scenery. The kind-of-sort-of reason that comes to everyone’s mind when trying to think of a “deep” reason as to why we watch movies. Maybe we’re going through a tough time, and want a little distraction for just 2 hours. 2 hours of not worrying about anything at all. Maybe you’re “escaping” (totally not the same thing as procrastinating) from writing that essay due at midnight, although I don’t think I would recommend that option. We can also use these films as a coping mechanism.

Entertainment. We just like it. Maybe some of you are just watching because you’re bored. There is absolutely no problem with that. You don’t need some super deep reason as to why you enjoy movies. Maybe you just like it, and that’s that.

Share stories. Films are essentially storytelling. We share experiences, perspectives, and opinions on whatever we might take from films. We can take different advice and apply fresh ideas to our life that we take from movies. Maybe we’ll learn from others’ mistakes and take care not to make the same mistake.

Bonding. I can bet that you’ve watched a movie with someone before. How was it afterwards? Did you discuss the movie, share opinions, offer ways on how you viewed the movie? That, my friend, no matter how small of a chat you have about the movie, is bonding. You connect, relax, and share interests when watching the movie. The chat after the movie opens up new discussions between the viewers. You can learn so much more about someone just by knowing the reasonings as to why they may enjoy a particular type or style of movie.


So all in all, we watch films for a variety of reasons. Whether its for education purposes, storytelling,or just because we like it, I think we can all get something out of it. Why do you watch films?